Rainer Maria Rilke

"Live a while in these books, learn from them what seems to you worth learning, but above all love them. This love will be repaid you a thousand and a thousand times, and however your life may turn,-it will, I am certain of it, run through the fabric of your growth as one of the most important threads among all the threads of your experiences, disappointments, and joys."--Rainer Maia Rilke

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Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Not What I Expected--But, That's a Good Thing!

Picture the Dead by Adele Griffin and Lisa Brown

Adolescent Fiction
This was a strange book, and by strange, I mean unusual.....and strange the way you would normally use that word.  Weird.  I suppose I thought it was going to be more a horror story based on the title, description and cover, but, it wasn't.  It was more historical fiction than anything else.  With a book like this, it's a little hard to put just one label on it.  Definitely a thriller with so much going on!

Jennie's twin brother Toby and her beloved fiance Will have been killed in the Civil War.  Will's brother, and Jennie's childhood friend, Quinn, returns a broken and wounded man.  Jennie becomes his nurse and begins to wonder if perhaps she can find love again after such tragedy.  Desperate to see and communicate with the dead, Jennie accompanies her aunt and uncle to a ghost photographer and discovers evidence in the photos that Will or Toby is trying to communicate with her from beyond the grave.  Are they trying to scare her or warn her from something?  And, if so, what could be jeopardizing her life?

The book is equal parts story and a scrapbook with photos, journal entries and even some 'news' clippings.  When the story was written more like a journal or diary ,I loved that aspect of it although the paperback version was difficult to read and some pages were almost impossible to decipher because the print was so small and smudged.  Overall,  I found it to be sad and haunting. I have to say that I loved it and I didn't expect that.  It was just so absolutely different from anything I've ever read.  The format was amazing and Jennie came so alive on the pages.  I found myself screaming at her dumb decisions several times!  I was on the edge of my seat the entire time and there is a twist in the plot I never saw coming.

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